Now, there are acquaintances, there are friends and then there are homies. I've been one of those people who painstakingly make friends. Meaning, it takes me a while to feel people out and confide in them and just be comfortable with them. I can count my true friends on one hand. Friends that have been there for me and although we might not be able to see each other all the time, when we do get together, its like we pick up where we left off.
Over the years, there has been one person who was a constant in my life, my cousin Diana. We spent countless summers together, we used to write to one another, we even went to college together for a year. I have so many memories that include her. When we would spend summer vacations together, we would also be bedmates. That meant there was alot of talking, whispering, laughing and back scratching. Whenever something was going on in my life, I wanted to tell her all about it. Now, our busy lives don't let us stay connected as much as we'd like, but when we are together we are still busting our guts laughing. She's going to kill me for putting her picture up, but she should be thankful I'm not putting up her prom picture, or when she was wearing her huge bifocals. Ahem.
Another dear friend of mine is Carolina. Boriqua in the house! She came from a large, loving Puerto Rican family with four sisters. They were all tall and beautiful with hazel eyes, huge rack, light creamy skin and beautiful curly hair. I'm not kidding, they made me feel like I was an ugly duckling sometimes with my burgundy hair, combat boots, my torn jeans and the fact that I loved to rip the loudest burps. Anything to antagonize them, really. They used to call me salvaje which means savage in spanish. Wasn't that sweet? What evened everything out was the fact that they all had huge feet, like size 11. Much to their envy, whenever we went out shopping, I could buy whatever shoes I liked. They had to order special shoes. We all worked together at a video store Carolina managed. We had alot of fun, renting whatever movies we wanted, talking about all the boys we liked, having fat girl parties. Carolina had a beautiful, mother-like quality about her. She was always sweet and caring and I never once saw her lose her temper. She would always wear these muu-muu's to bed that her abuelita bought her. Funny thing was, we didn't have alot in common. She didn't like any of the music I did, she never went to any concerts, we had opposite tastes in clothes, she was absolutely disgusted by the fact that I liked to smoke cigarettes (the marijuana kind) etc. but we got along wonderfully as we worked together and carpooled to school three days a week. During my college years, she was a true friend. Now she is an old married lady with three kids and we see each other on occasion, but not as often as I'd like.
Another homie from way back is Amparo. Yeh, I bet you never heard that name before! Her name is as unique as her personality. We did so many crazy and stupid things together such as go to countless nightclubs, parties, drag queen shows, film festivals in Hollywood, shoplifting art supplies, selling drugs, getting high, walking through Melrose, going to concerts, hanging out at Tower Records to look at magazines and books all day, shopping for fat girl clothes, art shows, graffiti shows...you name it, we did it together. Even if we had nothing to do, we would do that together. She would lay on my bed and sketch in her book and I would sit at my drafting table and paint. Some of the most fun I've ever had I had with Amparo. The cool thing is, she was with me during the time I fell in love with this skinny, crazy graffiti artist. She heard me talktalktalktalk about him and cry when I couldn't have him. She was also with me the day we fell in love. She was my maid of honor at my wedding. Shoot, we ate In-N-Out burger the day of my wedding when we went to get our nails done and something that had never happened to me, happened. I was so nervous I couldn't eat my cheeseburger! Oh, we laughed about that one too. Sometimes I just have to look at her and she will make a face or a gesture and she will have me in tears, laughing my butt off. She lives all the way in East Los so I can't just call up my homie and have her hang out with me, which is what I'd love to do. But when we do get together, we have a blast. Funny thing is, we look alot alike...people always ask if we are sisters. So we say we are...we are siamese soul sisters.
It is a beautiful thing, knowing you have friends that you can count on, that want to lift you up, not tear you down. One of my dear friends that I met about two years ago is Rita. Anyone that knows me knows that I love me some Rita. She has such a big heart and compassion for others. She is always concerned about you and has a heart to pray. She is one of the few women I know who, when we are talking on the phone or in person, will stop everything and say, "Let's pray." That is a blessing to me, knowing that whatever I share with her, I know she is willing to go before the Lord and intercede. That is powerful. That is true friendship. We also have other things in common...we both have large families, we are stepmoms, we both have crazy husbands that love God, and we are dedicated to our families. I know she has my back and I have her's. She is ghetto fabulous and that's what I love about her. If you can love a man with 5150 (the police code for any person that, as a result of mental disorder, is a danger to others) tatted on his neck, then you will have my life-long devotion.
It feels good to know I have friends. Proverbs 17:17 says a friend loves at all times. And thats what friends mean to me...more people to love during the journey.